Category: Web

Get Social Media Right

analyticsThat title might be a little bit of link bait, as I have yet to master all of my social media. (medias?) At any rate I did come across this article from ProBlogger that has some very good insights and useful numbers. I recommend giving it a look.

What you see there is one of the recommendations stressed in the article. Social media is all about engagement. I think too many writers err on the side of using social media as a broadcast platform. Even myself I can see some posts where I’m guilty of this. What really makes social media work is the social side of it. Share and communicate; entice your readers to communicate back. That is advice you cannot go wrong with.

Social Networks to Watch in 2014

If coming up with your message isn’t hard enough finding the best home for it can add another wrinkle. While Facebook, in many eyes, may seem synonymous with social networking, as writers trying to reach out target audience, we need to be aware of alternatives and the audiences they attract. This article has some good descriptions of the various networks and their audiences. I would even add there is one network that I have never heard of,,but read more by clicking the link below.

Don’t Push That Button

Going through my RSS feed from, I came across this little gem. Stop. Don’t post that post! 7 questions to ask before you hit publish.

I think all bloggers could use a list of these rules taped right to their computer monitor. Since I do a lot of blogging on my tablet I’ll tape one there too. The biggest rule that I tend to go by is if the post is something I would share if I came across it. I have a few posts sitting in the perpetual, “draft,” drawer because after I wrote them, I came back and didn’t even feel like editing them. I have learned that not all post are created equal. Now I have a check list to look at when I am faced with a post that I’m just not sure about.

Start Your Blog – Grow Your Platform

This article came to me via one of my fellow Inkslingers, thank you Gale. I found it a great resource for writers just starting a blog or even those looking to refresh their current blog.

I have heard many writers ask, “Where do I start with a blog?” The simple answer is, you start with the content. What do you want to communicate to your readers? You can try a scatter-shot approach at first and see what generates the most activity but you run the risk of diluting your message. Ideally when someone thinks of your blog one thought should come to mind. Focus will ground your blog and I believe lend it an air of credibility.

To help you along your way, Pro Blogger has a great resource: How to Write Great Blog Content. Think of this as a aggregate of articles dealing with various topics like, how long should your posts be, how to make your blog scan-able,  how often should you post and so on. The examples and lessons here could take you years to learn on your own. I have had this blog for two years now and I took away a few tips and had confirmation of things that I have observed. I recommend you give the link a click.

Amazon Announces Cloud Based Music Service

As I write this I am uploading a good portion of my music collection to Amazon’s servers. There has been much talk about music streaming services from the likes of Google and Apple but it appears Amazon has beat them to the punch. Once question I have though is, now that I can stream my collection across the web will I?

I already have most of my music on my Android phone, I had to buy a bigger SC card but now it is largely all there. What isn’t on the phone are the songs I bought from iTunes back when they had DRM. I could burn and then re-rip them but that just seems like a lot of trouble so I will let them be.

Cloud services do offer a great alternative to my previous backup routine, ie little to none. I use Dropbox quite a bit for shuffling my files between phone home and work and do not see that changing but then again this is a different service. An application on the Xbox 360 could be cool, an easy way to stream your music to the home system without plugging in my phone.

Here is a link to Mashable’s impression of the service.

Life on Cloud 9 3/4

This was a post I contributed to MCLC TechTalk Blog

Last week I had to face the two most dreaded words every gadget owner fears, “Factory Reset.” My Android phone started having trouble sending and receiving pictures via text, MMS for the acronym inclined. The reset fixed the phone, but that’s not what this topic is about. Essentially a factory reset wipes the phone clean of everything. It’s the same silicone it was when you bought it. After resetting the phone the fun part is putting back all your, contacts, calendar events, applications. Not when you’re on cloud 9 ¾.

Now before you label me an Android fanboy or Google zombie let me say that true the iPhone and Blackberry can do all of these same things, too. The thing to take away is as soon as my phone came back up my email, contacts and calendar were exactly as I last left them. I have been using Gmail since 2005 when I said goodbye to Outlook Express and never looked back. I added Calendar and Contacts when I bought my Evo in June and only use my phone’s USB cable for charging. While syncing can and will provide you with a safety blanket it still is an extra step to keep both your phone and PC environments the same. Not on Cloud 9 ¾.

I have also expanded my cloud footprint with storage, DropBox, notes, Evernote, and even music and video storage, Google Docs and Sound Cloud. All of my files are available from my phone, tablet and any PC I’m on with an internet connection. Oh and as for those Apps, a quick trip to the Google Market and I was able to pull up my list of downloads and quickly reinstall them. Well not all of them, I had to exhibit some control even on Cloud 9 ¾.